1 ånge From exciting history to living heritage. Every place name hides a story. This is an account of what happened. Read and learn. And come and visit!
3 ånge s cultural heritage When the railway came to Ånge the place became the focal point of the region. You can travel afar from Ånge railway station, and it is just as easy to come here to the great rivers and forests. Ljungan Valley was sparsely populated for a long time, with hunting and arable farming as the major occupations. Small communities such as Torp, Ånge, Borgsjö and Haverö developed. After the land reforms of the 19th century new fields improved the harvests, and more people were able to settle here. The forest stood untouched, deserted and was mainly used for firewood, tools and housing materials. A turning point came in 1877 when the railroad was extended to Norrland. Ånge became the junction for the north/south and east/west lines, and developed into a railway town which grew as more and more railway employees settled there. Today Ånge is the centre of the municipality, with a concentration of services and trade. Communities such as Alby and Haverö fared differently. Alby, which lies close to Ljungan hydro-power station became an industrial site, for example the chemical industry attracted a large work force. In Haverö the forest became the source of income for many people such as charcoal-burners, timber workers and log floaters. Today this manual labour has been replaced by machines and modern working methods. 3
4 ånge s cultural heritage Gammelbodavägen Råbergsvägen 1. Vik bridge. vikbron. 2. Vik peninsula. viknäset. 3. Ånge Church. ånge kyrka. telephone (Borgsjö parish) 4. Borgsjö Church. borgsjö kyrka. open all summer. telephone (Borgsjö parish) 5. Pilgrim route. pilgrimsleden. 6. St Olof s Well. (5) st olofs källa. open all year. telephone (Naturum Ånge) 7. Borgsjö hembygdsgård open air museum. borgsjö hembygdsgård. open all year and during events. telephone (during the summer). 8. Ånge Central Archives. centralarkivet i ånge. open Mon Fri address Torggatan 10. telephone Ånge Public Library. ånge folkbibliotek. open Mon, Thurs 11 19, Tues, Wed, Fri 11 16, Sat (Oct Apr). address Järnvägsgatan 3. telephone Ola Johans väg Albyvägen Ångebyn Ångesjön Holmbacken 83 Kyrkvägen Bobergsvägen Gammelbodavägen 3. 4
5 E 14 Ånge Erikslund Fränsta Ljungaverk E 14 Torpshammar Bergsgatan Centralgatan Järnvägsgatan Torggatan Parkgatan 8. Hemskogsvägen Gamla vägen Floravägen Solgårdsgatan Folkets hus Centraltorget Norra Borgsjövägen Centralstation 9. Lantmannagatan Rallarvägen Bangårdsgatan Köpmangatan Idrottsplats Bolbyvägen Ringvägen Tomtebo Håkabacken Kapellbacken Bengtsnäset Södra Borgsjövägen Forsön Länsstyrelsen Bakgrundskartor Lantmäteriet, dnr /188 y
6 ånges kulturarv. 1. Vik Bridge. vikbron. The Vik Bridge lies a few kilometres west of Fränsta. It was built in At 133 metres, it is Sweden s longest wooden bridge. It was built in defiance of the toll payments being demanded to cross the first bridge. The Vik bridge is an impressive structure, one which is unparalleled in Sweden. It is a listed building. 2. The Vik peninsula. viknäset. People have lived here in the Ljungan Valley since time immemorial. West of Fränsta, on what is today called the Vik peninsula and beside the famous Vik bridge, there are several burial mounds which indicate that a settlement once lay here. Ten graves remain of which one was excavated in 1931 and contained parts of a skeleton and some iron fragments. The graves are dated to approximately 500 ad. 6
7 ånge s cultural heritage 3. Ånge Church. ånge kyrka. Since the thousand years Sweden has become Christian, a large number of churches have been built throughout the country, in both towns and countryside. Their appearance has been governed by the style and ideals of their time, with influence from different countries and continents. Nostalgia has frequently prevailed. Ånge Church, beautifully situated by the lake, is a good example of this. The church is not old. It dates from only 1958, but was clearly built in the style of the medieval churches that existed in the county 600 years ago. Sweden practices religious freedom and everyone is welcome to Ånge Church, regardless of faith or philosophy of life. 7
8 ånges kulturarv. ånge s cultural heritage 4. Borgsjö Church. borgsjö kyrka. Inspiration was often sought from abroad when churches were built in Sweden, typically from Germany, Italy and France. Borgsjö church, built in 1776, is a fine example of a Rococo church following the style in current vogue in France. The beautiful interior is light and airy, with large windows and a high vaulted ceiling. Many of the fittings are from the medieval church which originally stood here. The wooden baptismal font is from the 17th century and the wooden sculpture of St Olof, patron saint of the church, is from the early 1500s. 8
9 ånge s cultural heritage 5. Pilgrim route. pilgrimsleden. A thousand years ago people in Sweden and Norway abandoned their belief in the Asa religion with its pagan deities, and turned to Christianity with its belief in God and Jesus. King Olof Haraldsson of Norway worked hard at introducing Christianity into Sweden s neighbouring country. But he met stiff resistance and was forced to flee to Russia in 1028 ad. Two years later, in July 1030, he returned and landed at Selånger outside present day Sundsvall. He marched to Norway with his host to retake his throne from his brother. In the ensuing battle at Stiklastad, Olof Haralsson died and his body was taken to Nidaros, today s Trondheim, where he was buried. Soon rumours spread about wonderful things happening at his grave, and people travelled there to be cured of serious illnesses. More and more people began to make the pilgrimage to Nidaros, which became as important to visit as Jerusalem, Rome and Santiago de Compostela. The pilgrim route between Sundsvall and Trondheim still exists today and passes by Borgsjö and Ånge. 6. St Olof s Well. st olofs källa. Along the pilgrim route between Sundsvall and Trondheim is St Olof s Well. According to history the spring welled up here when King Olof Haraldsson and his army were returning to Norway and rested at Borgsjö. Olof struck the ground with his staff to produce water to quench the thirst of his horses and soldiers. 9
10 ånge s cultural heritage 7. Borgsjö hembygdsgård open air museum. borgsjö hembygdsgård. Interest in local history grew in response to the dramatic change in society at the beginning of the 20th century, as more and more people left the countryside for industrial employment in the towns. Many were nostalgic for the traditional way of life in the country, and feared that it was disappearing. Local history societies, which fought to preserve old buildings and equipment, were created to keep memories alive. Borgsjö local history museum contains over 20 buildings that have been moved from various sites in the county. One example is the old inn which served both as a hostelry and carriage station in the horsedrawn age. Activities, including exhibitions and the sale of local craftwork, are arranged in the museum both summer and winter. 10
11 ånge s cultural heritage 8. Ånge Central Archives. centralarkivet i ånge. Sweden has a system of independent municipalities which dates back to All decisions, records and investigations from municipal activities are preserved and archived. According to the Swedish Access to Official Information Act these are all accessible to the public and everyone has the right to search information in the central municipal archives. The oldest records provide information about how society was governed more than a century ago. The records in the central archives include drawings of older buildings, plans for new housing areas, old class lists, and decisions concerning poor relief. 9. Ånge Public Library. ånge folkbibliotek. The library in Ånge is the central municipal library and is easily accessible beside the railway station in the centre of the town. There are four smaller branch libraries in Fränsta, Torpshammar, Ljungaverk and Alby, and a library bus regularly visits the outskirts of the municipality. You can borrow books, magazines and newspapers from the central library as well as music and films on cd and dvd, along with books and magazines in several different languages, and dictionaries and language tapes. The library has several computers which are connected to the Internet, and a study room for students. 11
12 Skiftesbäcken, Loböle. Eldnäset.
13 Eldnäset. There is no stopping what can be achieved! Said about Tomas Håkki Eriksson, artist and entrepreneur, active in the Ånge municipality. Ånge.
14 ånge s cultural heritage Why is history important? How long have people lived in Västernorrland? What did they live on? What sort of existence did they have? What important events affected the inhabitants? Just how old are the buildings and cultural environments that surround us? What can they tell us? Many questions can be answered by studying remains from the past which can help us understand how people adapted to the varying conditions of life at different times and why society looks the way it does today. This is why it is important to take care of our cultural heritage. It is a vital source of knowledge about the past. Why this brochure? This brochure has been produced by the County Administrative Board in Västernorrland. County administrative boards are government authorities that exist in every county and work with issues that extend across the whole of society. An important area of concern is the protection of valuable buildings, churches and ancient remains, ensuring that significant aspects of society s history are preserved and made accessible to the public. There are several other bodies in Sweden that work with history and the cultural heritage. These include museums, archives and libraries. Through exhibitions, archival records and books they reveal the past, the ancient landscape and how people lived. The aim of this brochure is to inform you about some of the places under the protection of the County Administrative Board. We have also chosen to include other places that are well worth a visit such as museums, libraries and archives. Protection according to the Heritage Act. Listed buildings are those that are protected by law. They must be preserved with care and cannot be altered or demolished. There are approximately 70 such buildings in Västernorrland. They have been chosen because they are excellent examples of historic architecture or were important to the history of society. Churches are also protected by the Heritage Act which means that they must be preserved with care and cannot be altered or demolished without permission from the county administrative boards. No church built before 1940 may be changed or demolished, but even churches which were built after that may be protected. As Christianity was Sweden s major religion for more than a thousand years, the Church has had a great influence on society. Church buildings are thus an important part of our cultural heritage. Ancient remains are the traces of past human activity from all periods. These can include thousand-year old graves in the shape of stone cairns or large grass-covered earthen mounds, settlement sites, trapping pits for wild animals, paintings on rock faces, old mills, and much more. There are no books from prehistoric times to relate how people lived in those ancient days. Therefore it is the ground under our feet which holds an archive full of information on past life. Ancient remains can provide much information which is hard to find otherwise. They too are protected from alteration or destruction by the Heritage Act. 14
15 Some terms. Since this brochure is aimed at everyone regardless of background, here is a brief explanation of some of the terms used: Culture includes not only music, theatre and literature, but also the way people live and organise their existence and their society. Sollefteå Ånge Örnsköldsvik Kramfors Härnösand Timrå Sundsvall History is the study of human activity in previous times. Cultural heritage refers to the traces left behind by previous generations, such as buildings, houses, objects and customs. Cultural environment is a very broad term and refers to environments influenced by man, such as towns and agricultural landscapes. It is often used in a narrower sense to refer to a limited environment such as a manorial estate. Norrland is the northernmost region of Sweden and includes Västernorrland. The southern region is called Götaland and the central region Svealand. A county (län) is a geographical area delimited for public administration, for example, Västernorrland. Sweden is divided into 21 counties. A municipality (kommun) is a smaller geographical area with responsibility for a large portion of our social services such as schools, child care, geriatric care, planning of roads and waterways, and integration. Sweden is divided into 290 municipalities. Translation is important since there are many people in our province who speak languages other than Swedish. In order to reach out to as many as possible with information about our history and cultural heritage we provide this brochure in Arabic, Persian, Swedish and Spanish. Brochures in the same series about other municipalities in the province are also available in French, Russian, Somali and Amharic. 15
16 Welcome to Ånge. There is a history behind everything you see around you. All buildings, roads, fields and forest groves have something to relate. Every period had its events which affect our present surroundings. Increased knowledge about our history leads to an increased understanding of the daily environment we live in, with its mixture of old and new which makes our society exciting and interesting. We present some places here that can help to explain the origin and growth of Ånge, places which are well worth visiting today. Länsstyrelsen i Västernorrland (Västernorrland County Administrative Board) Härnösand. Phone Graphic design, production se idea ab. Text Mats Wigardt. Photo Anna Gullmark, Samir Hussein/Björn Grankvist / Murberget Västernorrland County Museum, Margareta Bergvall, Jayamalie Perera. Printing Lenanders Grafiska. September 2010.
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